Starting next June, when you pick up a pack of cigarettes, you will see in disturbing detail just what they can do to you. The FDA announced it will require that graphic images appear on packs -- in an attempt to discourage young people from picking up the habit.
"Every day, almost 4,000 youth try a cigarette for the first time and 1,000 youth become regular, daily smokers," said Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. "Today marks an important milestone in protecting our children and the health of the American public."
The possible photos include a man holding a cigarette in his hand while smoke wafts from a hole in his throat. Another might be a corpse on a slab. Still another shows a dead man with a long autopsy scar running the length of his body. The image accompanies the warning "smoking can kill you."
"Today, the FDA takes a crucial step toward reducing the tremendous toll of illness and death caused by tobacco use by proposing to dramatically change how cigarette packages and advertising look in this country. When the rule takes effect, the health consequences of smoking will be obvious every time someone picks up a pack of cigarettes," said FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg, M.D.